CHINA New book records the battle with COVID-19

CHINA

New book records the battle with COVID-19

SHINE

22:27, November 06, 2020

A seminar to launch the "Friends in Need Are Friends Indeed" was organized by the Shanghai Foreign Affairs Office and Shanghai People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries.

A new book was launched at a seminar in Minhang District on Friday to promote friendship between expats and local communities amid the pandemic.

“Friends in Need Are Friends Indeed” is a collection of 57 stories on how expats took part in the fight against the pandemic since the beginning of the year.

It highlights the solidarity and cooperation between expats and local communities in the fields of culture, education, technology, health and commerce.

During the seminar, Linda Painan, chairwoman of the Shanghai Family Life Services Center, Ashish Maskay, founder of blood donation advocacy group Bloodline, Kawashima Tomoko, from the Yokohama Economic and Trade Representative Office in Shanghai, and Gao Baolin, chairman of Shanghai Zhonghao Textile Co, told of their experiences during the pandemic.

Stories of people's experiences during the pandemic are shared at the seminar.

Painan purchased 20,000 medical masks from Indonesia for front-line medics in Shanghai. The center also held a two-day corporate fair in September, helping local expats and overseas returnees understand pandemic and prevention measures.

Tomoko recorded life in Shanghai during the pandemic on WeChat and online platforms in Yokahama. She said Shanghai is a city that embraces and cares for expats and that she wanted to be with the city through hard times.

Maskay, a surgeon from Nepal, is the founder of Bloodline, a voluntary blood donation team encouraging foreigners to support the city. Each donor becomes part of a "love map" after their donation, showing their love and gratitude for the city, according to Maskay.

Gao's company, one of the biggest sock companies in China, set up mask production lines earlier this year and a total of 400,000 free masks produced by the company had reached people across the nation and overseas.

The new book is presented to representatives from all walks of life, including the Zhangjiang international community, New York University Shanghai and Shanghai Chamber of Commerce for Import and Export.

Zhang Wenhong, head of Shanghai’s expert team for the treatment of coronavirus patients, said the seminar was a great opportunity to strengthen bonding of global citizens regardless of race and nationality.

“We could survive this pandemic by only two methods, the vaccines and, more importantly, the collaboration and solidarity of all mankind. We are all in this together,” Zhang said.

The "Friends in Need Are Friends Indeed" collection of stories is launched during the seminar.

Lin Songtian, head of the Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries, wrote a preface for the book.

Lin said the book reveals the kindness of ordinary people in Shanghai, one big warm home with a spirit of openness and unanimity.

Three expats pictured during the seminar.

“As one of the sideline activities of the 3rd CIIE, today’s event will take the CIIE as the stage and further help expat friends deepen their understanding and recognition of Shanghai and China,” said Sha Hailin, head of the Shanghai People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries.

Ashish Maskay (center), founder of Bloodline, receives a calligraphy work, “Friends in Need Are Friends Indeed,” to mark his birthday.

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